(CHICAGO, ILLINOIS) The 30th Annual Chicago Blues Festival expands to four days with a special opening night concert at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park the evening of Thursday, June 6 featuring a line-up of the genre’s next generation headlined by Shemekia Copeland. Friday, June 7 the festival moves to Grant Park where Bobby Rush kicks-off the festival’s journey from the Mississippi Delta to Chicago and the world.
The 2013 Chicago Blues Festival is “Rollin’ Up the River” celebrating the blues with a musical journey up the Mississippi. Throughout the 1940s and 1950s there was a “great migration” of African Americans from the southern United States to Chicago. During that period, the “delta blues” landed in the “the promised land,” establishing the foundation for the genre’s electric guitar sound known as the “Chicago blues” style. The voyage will start in New Orleans, Louisiana and Mississippi on Friday then to Memphis, Tennessee on Saturday ending in Chicago on Sunday, where the blues electrified the world.
Celebrating the future of blues music, the festival will open for the first time in Millennium Park on June 6. Shemekia Copeland (crowned the “new” Queen of the Blues in 2011) will headline the evening with special guest, blues guitar prodigy and Buddy Guy collaborator, Quinn Sullivan. The evening will begin at 6:30 p.m. with openers Blues Kids of America followed by Jamiah on Fire & The Red Machine.
The Chicago Blues Festival moves to Grant Park on Friday with performances by Irma Thomas and Bobby Rush (above) and his Blues Band. Saturday’s headliners include Otis Clay, Uvee Hayes, The Bar-Kays, Eddie Floyd (above) and Sir Mack Rice. The Chicago Blues Festival closes on Sunday, June 9 with performances by blues greats James Cotton (above), John Primer, Billy Branch, Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater and many more.
Highlights of the festival in Grant Park will include music on five stages: The Petrillo Music Shell, Bud Light Crossroads Stage, Pepsi Front Porch, Mississippi Juke Joint and Windy City Blues Society Stage. The festival will also pay special tribute to Delmark Records on its 60th anniversary and a centennial celebration of blues legend, Pinetop Perkins. The full line-up will be announced later this spring.